The search for football betting value
Even where a football setting system is little more than football tips, there is still an implied degree of value to that tip ie "I fancy Spurs to beat Chelsea this weekend, back them at 2.60".
But there are lots of football betting systems around whose key point is that they claim to see value where the market has missed it.
What is a football value bet?A bet is good value if it provides better odds than the likelihood of a particular event occurring.
For example, say you can bet on West Ham to beat Wigan at 2.50 - this implies that West Ham have a 40% chance of winning.
If you believe that West Ham's chances of winning this particular match are actually 50%, then these odds would be great value. You would actually back them at 2.00 (or evens), so 2.50 provides plenty of margin for profitable betting.
If West Ham played Wigan on the same basis again and again (please, no!!!) then you would expect to come out with a good profit.
What is the probability of a particular bet winning?Establishing football value is to one degree or another a confusing mixture of prediction and statistics.
No one can say for sure that "West Ham have a 50% chance of winning".
What they can do is say "Our system suggests that West Ham have a 50% chance etc".
That system will generally be based on past statistics, although not always. Most value football betting systems assume that, more often than not, history will to some degree or another repeat itself.
Now, there's a degree of nonsense in all sports betting systems because past form does not guarantee future performance.
But over the long term, patterns do sometimes emerge that give a good steer as to the outcome of football matches.
And sometimes these data suggest that the market misprices certain bets.
That is what a football value betting is all about.